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Working lives

Danny Trup, 36, is Gibb's head of portfolio/programme management, responsible for supporting rail engineering disciplines for CTRL phase I operations and assisting with other transport schemes in the UK and overseas.

Route to the job

A degree in mining engineering from Newcastle University gave me a grounding in production and construction engineering, business risk and value based decision making. My technical and management skills were subsequently developed through employment with Edmund Nuttall, where I worked on projects such as the Docklands Light Railway extension to Bank and various road, marine and structural contracts. I was fortunate to secure a design office secondment with Maunsell, working on the Jubilee Line Extension (JLE). This helped me achieve chartered civil engineering status following the ICE's introduction of an 'experience appraisal' route. I worked as a project manager on the JLE for London Underground, on the subsurface station interchange at Waterloo. Later, with Bovis Lend Lease Consulting, I developed skills in business process enhancement.

I became a professional value manager and risk consultant, working with clients such as Railtrack, LUL, Pfizer, Cisco, Lucent and 3M. I also supported programme management assignments in the UK and overseas.

Expectations

On joining Gibb in December 2000, I sought to develop my business skills further within a consultancy environment. What drives me is the challenge of improving a client's business with particular focus on satisfying customers needs. I was to start work in the rail industry, serving clients in the transportation, utility, telecoms and IT sectors.

Reality I am based at Gibb's recently established London City office. It is a dynamic environment and I was aware initially that like many clients, I may not have fully appreciated the considerable range of skills Gibb has to offer - from design and environmental management to business consulting and providing technical advice to financial institutions and governments. My challenge has been to understand this capability and use it as a resource in support of a client's business needs through the delivery of a portfolio of activity and/or a programme of works. Our client base is extremely receptive to our added value, innovative approach. The reality is working out exactly to plan.

Advice

I always try to focus on skills and competencies, not job titles and roles. It helps to review performance periodically against personal and company objectives then respond accordingly. I have found it necessary to seek new ways of applying personal strengths and positively develop new competencies such as mentoring others, training and consultancy skills. I advocate using a mentor who can take an objective view, away from day to day line management. I believe the key is to have confidence in what you do and maximise your own experience and training. Everything can have a benefit.

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